The Cut

Wil Mara, Author . St. Martin's/Dunne $24.95 (289p) ISBN 978-0-312-35930-0

The second entry (after The Draft ) in Mara's National Football League series captures little of the excitement and drama of professional football. Prosaic and predictable, the novel follows the machinations of an unscrupulous head coach as he manipulates a devoted sports agent, his saintly client and three down-on-their-luck free agents. When Barry Sturtz asks the Giants to renegotiate the contract of his client, star tight end T.J. Brookman, Giants' management, on the advice of head coach Alan Gray, refuses. Brookman boycotts training camp, and Gray invites three free agents to camp to compete for his job: Jermaine Hamilton, a former Pro Bowler now out of the game and regarded as “a has-been”; Corey Reese, another former star felled by a career-threatening injury and facing bankruptcy; and Daimon Foster, an undrafted free agent chasing a dream. They don't know it, but Gray is using them as leverage against Brookman and plans to cut them no matter how well they perform. Besides the uninspired plot and fairy-tale denouement, the characters are one-dimensional and the narrative groans with hyperbole: “He'd been in [gridiron] battles that made Custer's Last Stand look like a dance recital.” This is a sports novel suitable for fans who equate football with war. (Oct.)

Reviewed on: 08/20/2007
Release date: 10/01/2007
Genre: Fiction
Open Ebook - 304 pages - 978-1-4668-5641-7
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